Agenda and minutes

Swansea Bay City Region Joint Scrutiny Committee - Tuesday, 9th November, 2021 2.00 pm

Venue: Remotely via Teams

No. Item


Welcome and Roll Call


The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting.


Declarations of Interest


There were no declarations of interest received.


Chairs Announcements


There were no announcements.


Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 228 KB


Item 8: Members advised that they asked at the meeting if the 102 jobs relating to Yr Egin were new jobs or if they were transferred from another region? Members also asked for clarification on this item also.


The minutes of the previous meeting held on 20th July 2021 were approved as a true and accurate record with above amendment.


Digital Infrastructure pdf icon PDF 430 KB


Gareth Jones, the Project Lead for Digital Infrastructure provided a brief presentation to Members. The programme is about investing in the connectivity of the region. Connectivity underpins large aspects of a persons life including social, well-being and business. It is anticipated that there will be £55million investment in the programme over the next 5 years. This is made up by £25million City Deal grant, £13.5million public sector funding and £16.5million private sector investment.


The aim of the project is to achieve 100% gigabit coverage for all residential and business premises within the region. The high level objectives include that the project should act as a catalyst for regional digital infrastructure investment and stimulate and facilitate private sector investment.


The £55millions is broken down over five years across three project work streams: rural, connected places and next gen wireless. The project spend for each of the three work streams £25.5million, £20million and £9million respectively.


The rural work stream is about addressing gaps in connectivity. Connected places is about world class connectivity in economic growth zones and next gen wireless includes a number of interventions around the early adoption of 5G.


Mr Jones provided further details on the individual work streams. The rural stream includes the procurement of gigabit capable fibre infrastructure. It was noted that this is a strategy that has been successfully used across some of the best connected regions in the UK. It involves investing in the various assets owned across the region. This will then encourage investment in neighbouring buildings, areas etc. This will potentially attract private investment.


There is a community support and engagement programme which is working with local businesses to assist with developing technology in the worst served parts of the region and the most rural areas. They will assist them to access funding streams


There a number of interventions within rural. There is no one single project spend. The largest item is to procure gigabit capable fibre infrastructure to public sector hub sites. This a method which has been used successfully across the best connected parts of the country. The procurement will be aimed at assets that the public sector own. To obtain full state aid compliance to procure broadband for residential properties can take years. The UK Government recommend utilising public sector assets. Through the investment of fibre build across assets across the region, this increases the potential for further investment to neighbouring building sites, commercial buildings etc. This could potentially attract private sector investment on top. Hub sites are considered any site that is publicly owned which needs connectivity.


The rural element will incorporate a community support and engagement programme which will help improve connectivity in the worst served part of the region in the most rural areas, helping them exploit future and existing funding streams.


Project Gigabit involves working with the UK and Welsh Governments for outside in investment. The City Deal aims to accelerate its investment as soon as possible into the region.


The last element of the rural element  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.


Urgent Items

Any urgent items (whether public or exempt) at the discretion of the Chairperson pursuant to Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972


There were no urgent items.